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Author Topic: Why do some feel the need to convert and others not?  (Read 7343 times) Average Rating: 0
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« on: November 28, 2009, 02:31:35 AM »

I know people who say the Holy Spirit led them into Catholicism, others Protestantism.  Let's keep it limited to Christianity for the purpose of the discussion. 

Yet some are led to Orthodoxy.  Perhaps it depends on the temperament of the individual, as in more emotional types tend to get religion and convert.  And perhaps more temperaments with an authoritarian personality convert to Orthodoxy? 

2 questions really:

1) Why do people convert and others (especially with similar backgrounds) not?

2) Are all those who feel led into Protestantism and Roman Catholicism misreading the Spirit? 

K
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« Reply #1 on: November 28, 2009, 05:13:45 AM »

I am in the process of converting because of much research into history and the theology of the Orthodox Church. What started this journey? I was raised in a southern baptist church, and I started reading my bible.  The plan of salvation that I was being taught at church didn't line up with what I was reading in the gospels, and I was determined to find out what the truth was. This led me to discover what I really believed and why I believed it.
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« Reply #2 on: November 28, 2009, 05:53:27 AM »

Why did the majority of people in Israel in the time of Christ and the Apostles not convert when they had similar backgrounds to Christ and His Apostles?
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« Reply #3 on: November 28, 2009, 06:15:52 AM »

This is a very good question and raises many interesting ideas.

There are some people who are spiritually 'switched on' and others who are spiritually dead. Some people simply feel nothing spiritual in their experience of life whatsoever, and no matter how hard they try they cannot find any special meaning or experience in anything religious or spiritual. This may be the result of their upbringing, or it could simply be the way they are. These people don't spend their time contemplating ideas of God, morality, salvation, divine guidance, etc. Therefore, they come in two forms: the satisfied theists, and the satisfied atheists. People who are born into a religious tradition, yet are spiritually dead or indifferent, often remain in that religious tradition simply because it feels normal and they accept it without much thought. They merely accept what is tought to them as children and don't think too hard about it. Others, because they don't find any value in spirituality, drift away from religion altogether because it either bores them, makes them uncomfortable or seems uncool.

There are others, however, who are very spiritually alive and aware. People who think constantly about God, faith, the afterlife, the meaning of life, morality, and other matters of philosophy and spirituality. These are the kind of people who convert. These are the spiritual thinkers, who think hard about matters of faith and work out independantly where they stand on certain theological issues. They are hungry for God, hungry for meaning, hungry for understanding and purpose and truth. Not all of them find it, many are misdirected and led, and find themselves converting to churches which might satisfy a certain need for those hungry searching individuals, but do not contain the fullness of Christ's Church on earth. Such people experience a very real spiritual hunger, and their search leads them to Protestantism, Catholicism, the Society of Friends, Islam, Buddhism, or whatever happens to satisfy the strongest aspects of their individual thirst. Others do find their way to the Church of Christ, and it is fortunate that they do. Others who are spiritually alive and spiritually conscious find the answers they are looking for right in front of them - such people are those born into the Church, and as they get older they appreciate it more and more.

Those who are spiritually alive find themselves asking, searching and thirsting. Many find what they are looking for in the Church they were raised in, others need to look elsewhere. Not all of them find the Truth, although their searches may be sincere nonetheless. Let us pray that all those who are genuinely thirsting for God may discover the Orthodox Church.

Personally, I discovered Orthodoxy after I had already found God and Christ. My searching and thirsting had been growing more intense with every day, and I felt myself drawn in a certain direction. When I finally fell down on my knees and prostrated before God the Father, the Son and the Holy Spirit, I still had not found Orthodoxy. I was considering becoming an Anglican. It was not long afterwards, however, that I learnt that the original Church of Christ is still alive and contains the spiritual fullness that I wanted in my Christian experience. I am glad that I found Orthodoxy, but had I not read certain books or looked at certain websites, or had I not studied early Christian history in high school, I very possibly could have become an Anglican or Quaker instead.
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« Reply #4 on: November 28, 2009, 11:00:44 AM »

Read my answer in light of the fact that I'm not even in the first stages of formal conversion, but...

1). Orthodoxy is the framework that allows me to keep my Christian faith. It's not the authoritarian aspect of it (and if you want authoritarianism, you really need Roman Catholicism, because Orthodoxy in real world practice is a decentralized mess), but the fact that its doctrines and Dogmas are traceable to specific points in history, and from those points one can point back to the Apostles. No one else can really offer that, and that's why everyone I know from my background who has converted has done so.

I also know a few others who didn't convert because some of what Orthodoxy says is a hard pill to those who were raised outside of it (e.g. claims to being THE Church, etc.)

2). That's above my pay grade, except to say that if I hadn't been raised one way and worked my way through a couple of other Christian denominations I probably wouldn't have been led in this direction.
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« Reply #5 on: November 28, 2009, 01:02:42 PM »

1) Why do people convert and others (especially with similar backgrounds) not?
The reason the first group converts is obvious. They chose to, they believed that this is the truth. The question -technically- is "Why some people prefer to delude themselves and not convert?", I think. Usually, these are people who can't refute Orthodoxy, yet they don't want to convert either. Still, they may go on and carry a wide range of Orthodox beliefs - never converting though. This has to do with how you face God and the world around you. Some are afraid of abandoning their family's beliefs, their country's traditions and, generally, their non-Orthodox friends. The problem is social/psychological, not theological.

Quote
2) Are all those who feel led into Protestantism and Roman Catholicism misreading the Spirit?
Provided they have read the Spirit? By the way, what do you think about them? Are the Pope's followers controlled from the devil or all are denominations the same?
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« Reply #6 on: November 28, 2009, 02:29:11 PM »

I know people who say the Holy Spirit led them into Catholicism, others Protestantism.  Let's keep it limited to Christianity for the purpose of the discussion.  

Yet some are led to Orthodoxy.  Perhaps it depends on the temperament of the individual, as in more emotional types tend to get religion and convert.  And perhaps more temperaments with an authoritarian personality convert to Orthodoxy?  

2 questions really:

1) Why do people convert and others (especially with similar backgrounds) not?

2) Are all those who feel led into Protestantism and Roman Catholicism misreading the Spirit?  

K

Answers:

1) Free will and man's stubborness to see and accept the truth.

2) Maybe they were never listening to begin with. Some have seen the truth and turned away because "well, that just doesn't line up with what I want/like to do."
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« Reply #7 on: November 28, 2009, 02:47:44 PM »


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Daniel 9:13 Just as it is written in the Law of Moses, all this disaster has come upon us, yet we have not sought the favor of the LORD our God by turning from our sins and giving attention to your truth.

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Is not our conscience a guide to the law of God? Are we not all urged and chided by God? For He favors His creation and wishes us to be in Him and with Him.
No one will be blameless in His sight, yet all are allowed to be partakers in His Kingdom. Therefore, let us use what talents He has given us and do much with them. He guides us all, but will not force us. A good Father does this.
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« Reply #8 on: November 28, 2009, 04:23:59 PM »

1) Why do people convert and others (especially with similar backgrounds) not?
The reason the first group converts is obvious. They chose to, they believed that this is the truth. The question -technically- is "Why some people prefer to delude themselves and not convert?",

How is not chosing to convert, which as you wrote is chosing to believe that the claims of the EO are the truth, being deluded please?  That is a judgement with perhaps some bias, I submit, on the mental state of the person who is not convinced by the claim of the EO.   Undecided  


Quote
Usually, these are people who can't refute Orthodoxy, yet they don't want to convert either. Still, they may go on and carry a wide range of Orthodox beliefs - never converting though. This has to do with how you face God and the world around you. Some are afraid of abandoning their family's beliefs, their country's traditions and, generally, their non-Orthodox friends. The problem is social/psychological, not theological.

Perhaps for some, but not for others.  


Quote
Quote
2) Are all those who feel led into Protestantism and Roman Catholicism misreading the Spirit?

Provided they have read the Spirit? By the way, what do you think about them? Are the Pope's followers controlled from the devil or all are denominations the same?

Well, what fruits of the Spirit are shown, one might ask.  

With respect,

Ebor
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« Reply #9 on: November 28, 2009, 04:27:25 PM »

I know people who say the Holy Spirit led them into Catholicism, others Protestantism.  Let's keep it limited to Christianity for the purpose of the discussion.  

Yet some are led to Orthodoxy.  Perhaps it depends on the temperament of the individual, as in more emotional types tend to get religion and convert.  And perhaps more temperaments with an authoritarian personality convert to Orthodoxy?  

2 questions really:

1) Why do people convert and others (especially with similar backgrounds) not?

2) Are all those who feel led into Protestantism and Roman Catholicism misreading the Spirit?  

K

Answers:

1) Free will and man's stubborness to see and accept the truth.

2) Maybe they were never listening to begin with. Some have seen the truth and turned away because "well, that just doesn't line up with what I want/like to do."

Or maybe for many they have never had EO to "turn away" from because there isn't any representation where they are.  Another possibility is that what they might have seen did not present matters in a good light.

No offense intended...
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« Reply #10 on: November 28, 2009, 10:16:33 PM »

Some people don't convert because they don't want to.
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« Reply #11 on: November 28, 2009, 10:41:08 PM »

Some people don't convert because they don't want to.
LOL! profound.  Lips Sealed
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« Reply #12 on: November 29, 2009, 03:17:56 AM »

Some people don't convert because they don't want to.

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« Reply #13 on: November 29, 2009, 04:43:43 AM »

Some do no not convert because they are not convinced. Everyone has their own spiritual journey, and I believe that each case is unique. Just as we all are unique in our own way. I for one still wrestle with some issues, and I am sure many have felt the same way as their quest for truth progressed. But it is a journey in search of truth, yet where will it end? Only God knows. Remember, some converts have, on occasion, reverted to their former faith.
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« Reply #14 on: November 29, 2009, 04:19:01 PM »

How is not chosing to convert, which as you wrote is chosing to believe that the claims of the EO are the truth, being deluded please?
Notice that I said that you may end up carrying certain beliefs, not everything. Any Westerner who has checked out Orthodoxy has definitely been influenced a little bit by it, much more someone who has actually explored it because he thought of converting. So, there may be cases where people know that Orthodoxy is true, but do not convert for various other reasons. Still, deep inside, they know that they should.
But my Psychology bachelor is still a couple of years away, so I think I'll pass. Tongue

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« Reply #15 on: November 29, 2009, 05:46:12 PM »

Or maybe for many they have never had EO to "turn away" from because there isn't any representation where they are.  Another possibility is that what they might have seen did not present matters in a good light.

No offense intended...

Regarding your first point, obviously if someone has never heard of the Orthodox Church, I can't expect them to convert. I made my statement under the assumption that a person had investigated the different branches of Christianity and chosen another branch over Orthodoxy.

Regarding your second point, this is also true. In some parts of the US, the only EO parish available may be an "ethnic ghetto" of sorts that could turn people off. I have heard of people who are attracted to Orthodox theology, but have been hesitant to even broach the steps of an Orthodox church, for fear of being stigmatized because they don't fall within a particular ethnic group.

I also know some others that have said, "I don't care if they don't like me because I am not ______. I am here for Christ; not their culture."
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« Reply #16 on: November 29, 2009, 06:57:08 PM »

I know some people who will never convert because it seems as if the only way to become Orthodox in America is to either marry a Greek or be bookish.
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« Reply #17 on: November 29, 2009, 08:19:34 PM »

I know people who say the Holy Spirit led them into Catholicism, others Protestantism.  Let's keep it limited to Christianity for the purpose of the discussion.  

Yet some are led to Orthodoxy.  Perhaps it depends on the temperament of the individual, as in more emotional types tend to get religion and convert.  And perhaps more temperaments with an authoritarian personality convert to Orthodoxy?  

2 questions really:

1) Why do people convert and others (especially with similar backgrounds) not?

2) Are all those who feel led into Protestantism and Roman Catholicism misreading the Spirit?  

K


1.) For those who don't, I will say:

They love the culture they were raised in
They love the ethnic group and friends they were raised in
They love the group they were raised in
They love the songs they sang in their group
They loved the sermons in their group
They loved clapping their hands, stomping their feet, screaming, and running around the church

They love doing things their way
They love being independant
They love their pet doctrines, tv preachers, radio preachers........or peculiar doctrines of the group they are in
They love the politic stance of their group
They love the sense of family in their group

They are scared of Mary and Icons
And they are scared of what their family and friends will think if they become EO



2.) Go back to # 1










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« Reply #18 on: November 29, 2009, 09:04:21 PM »

I know some people who will never convert because it seems as if the only way to become Orthodox in America is to either marry a Greek or be bookish.

This is a myth that we as Orthodox Christians must work to dispel.

Of course, as someone who tends to be bookish, I'm not so good at dispelling the latter... Wink
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« Reply #19 on: November 29, 2009, 09:13:54 PM »

I know some people who will never convert because it seems as if the only way to become Orthodox in America is to either marry a Greek or be bookish.

This is a myth that we as Orthodox Christians must work to dispel.

Of course, as someone who tends to be bookish, I'm not so good at dispelling the latter... Wink

 laugh
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« Reply #20 on: November 29, 2009, 10:22:40 PM »

I know some people who will never convert because it seems as if the only way to become Orthodox in America is to either marry a Greek or be bookish.

I find this somewhat ironic, since "Evangelical" Protestantism is all about one big book, the Bible.  It's all about getting together and reading the good book, thumping the book, quoting the book, translating the book and spreading the contents of the book to the ends of the earth.  Protestants are as "bookish" as one can get.
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« Reply #21 on: November 30, 2009, 01:09:13 AM »

I know people who say the Holy Spirit led them into Catholicism, others Protestantism.  Let's keep it limited to Christianity for the purpose of the discussion. 

Yet some are led to Orthodoxy.  Perhaps it depends on the temperament of the individual, as in more emotional types tend to get religion and convert.  And perhaps more temperaments with an authoritarian personality convert to Orthodoxy? 

2 questions really:

1) Why do people convert and others (especially with similar backgrounds) not?

2) Are all those who feel led into Protestantism and Roman Catholicism misreading the Spirit? 

K

Often it's people with library cards.
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« Reply #22 on: November 30, 2009, 01:12:52 AM »

I know some people who will never convert because it seems as if the only way to become Orthodox in America is to either marry a Greek or be bookish.

My Priest is an Anglican Convert, my Godfather is Chinese and converted from Evengelical  Protestantism, my Godmother converted from being a Southern Baptist and I'm a Jew.

Not a Greek in the whole woodpile.
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« Reply #23 on: November 30, 2009, 01:18:39 AM »

... and I'm a Jew.


 Hey Marc, I'm not trying to be contentious or difficult, but I've never understood how a person can be a Jew and a Christian at the same time.  Could you help me understand this?  And if we need to Mods, can we create a new thread?  Thanks!
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« Reply #24 on: November 30, 2009, 01:24:31 AM »

He means that he is ethnically Jewish.  That's how there are atheist Jews.  A more interesting question would be if he was ever a religiously practicing Jew, which I would guess he was not.

I have know a fair amount of Catholic Jews in my life, who were ethnically Jewish, but followed Latin rite Catholicism with no Jewish interpolations.
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« Reply #25 on: November 30, 2009, 01:32:09 AM »

I see.  Well that kinda makes sense.  But the 'ethnicity' aspect is also confusing because there are black Ethiopian Jews, white Ashkenazi Jews, and brown Sephardic and Mizrahi Jews.
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« Reply #26 on: November 30, 2009, 02:31:03 AM »

I see.  Well that kinda makes sense.  But the 'ethnicity' aspect is also confusing because there are black Ethiopian Jews, white Ashkenazi Jews, and brown Sephardic and Mizrahi Jews.

And then there's the fact that ethnicity and religious orientation are traditionally inextricable.  We like everything in neat and tidy categories, but the real world is a messy place.  Ethnicity almost has no meaning in North America anymore.  "What's your ethnicity?"  "White!"
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« Reply #27 on: November 30, 2009, 02:42:00 AM »

I guess i am an emotional person. I first converted to Holy Orthodoxy because I thought the divine liturgy is so beautiful and the proper way to praise God. After that I began looking into the History's of RC an OC and found that Orthodoxy is the true Apostolic Church. I was baptised RC in 2000 and after about a year began to question the Changes that had happened to the Church since Vatican II then in 04 I went to a Latin Mass and began to think that if the RC was willing to change the Mass and everything else it was a crock so I started looking for the true Church which ultimately led me to Holy Orthodoxy and away from the Roman Heresy.
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« Reply #28 on: November 30, 2009, 06:08:48 AM »

People do not convert because they are happy with their present denomination. People need to face some kind of crisis before they start to question their theology. Without a crisis they retain the gut feeling that their faith is good enough.
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« Reply #29 on: November 30, 2009, 09:41:27 AM »

... and I'm a Jew.


 Hey Marc, I'm not trying to be contentious or difficult, but I've never understood how a person can be a Jew and a Christian at the same time.  Could you help me understand this?  And if we need to Mods, can we create a new thread?  Thanks!

It's an ethnic designation.. When I was a member of Sein Fein, was I Irish?  If a Greek is Jewish, isnt if fair to also say he is Greek?

I don't practice Judaism. I am a Christian. But I am not a Gentile.


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« Reply #30 on: November 30, 2009, 09:50:00 AM »

He means that he is ethnically Jewish.  That's how there are atheist Jews.  A more interesting question would be if he was ever a religiously practicing Jew, which I would guess he was not.

I have know a fair amount of Catholic Jews in my life, who were ethnically Jewish, but followed Latin rite Catholicism with no Jewish interpolations.

No, just the minimal brisket Judaism.. I did work in a Kosher Restaurant and was around very Orthodox Jews there. I was in a Jewish Fraternity in High School ( AZA ). I have suffered from anti-semitism. But I know more about Buddhism than Judaism.
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« Reply #31 on: November 30, 2009, 07:30:56 PM »

Would you like to know from a Catholic's perspective, why some of us don't convert? The answer will be very general and won't be a detailed description of Catholic Apologetics.
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« Reply #32 on: November 30, 2009, 08:06:21 PM »

People do not convert because they are happy with their present denomination. People need to face some kind of crisis before they start to question their theology. Without a crisis they retain the gut feeling that their faith is good enough.

Exactly, it took me seeing all the traditions the Catholic Church threw away and how after Vatican II it essentially became a new religion and then I dug deeper and saw thats what Catholicism is all about changing every hundred years or so and throwing in a new heresy for good measure.
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« Reply #33 on: November 30, 2009, 11:02:31 PM »

... and I'm a Jew.


 Hey Marc, I'm not trying to be contentious or difficult, but I've never understood how a person can be a Jew and a Christian at the same time.  Could you help me understand this?  And if we need to Mods, can we create a new thread?  Thanks!

It's an ethnic designation..


Wikipedia seems to agree with you.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ethnic_group
"An ethnic group is a group of humans whose members identify with each other, through a common heritage that is real or assumed.
Ethnic identity is further marked by the researcher Seng Yang in the recognition from others of a group's distinctiveness and the recognition of common cultural, linguistic, religious, behavioural traits as indicators of contrast to other groups."

So, then, if that's the case, Christian's are an ethnic group.  
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« Reply #34 on: November 30, 2009, 11:11:32 PM »

So, then, if that's the case, Christian's are an ethnic group.  
FINALLY! Someone gets it!
So can we now stop the nonsense about "ethnic Churches" in the US?
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« Reply #35 on: December 01, 2009, 12:07:26 AM »

... and I'm a Jew.


 Hey Marc, I'm not trying to be contentious or difficult, but I've never understood how a person can be a Jew and a Christian at the same time.  Could you help me understand this?  And if we need to Mods, can we create a new thread?  Thanks!

It's an ethnic designation..


Wikipedia seems to agree with you.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ethnic_group
"An ethnic group is a group of humans whose members identify with each other, through a common heritage that is real or assumed.
Ethnic identity is further marked by the researcher Seng Yang in the recognition from others of a group's distinctiveness and the recognition of common cultural, linguistic, religious, behavioural traits as indicators of contrast to other groups."

So, then, if that's the case, Christian's are an ethnic group.  

I have heard prayers that mention "The Christian Race". But it's not really common useage. I think having Jewish ethnicity is more commonly understood. I think you would need to have a pretty broad idea of what "Heritage" means to say Christians all belong to the same ethnic group. I would think it would be more about common ancestry, like being Irish or Greek or a Jew.
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« Reply #36 on: December 01, 2009, 12:45:22 AM »

... and I'm a Jew.


 Hey Marc, I'm not trying to be contentious or difficult, but I've never understood how a person can be a Jew and a Christian at the same time.  Could you help me understand this?  And if we need to Mods, can we create a new thread?  Thanks!

It's an ethnic designation..


Wikipedia seems to agree with you.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ethnic_group
"An ethnic group is a group of humans whose members identify with each other, through a common heritage that is real or assumed.
Ethnic identity is further marked by the researcher Seng Yang in the recognition from others of a group's distinctiveness and the recognition of common cultural, linguistic, religious, behavioural traits as indicators of contrast to other groups."

So, then, if that's the case, Christian's are an ethnic group.  

I have heard prayers that mention "The Christian Race". But it's not really common useage. I think having Jewish ethnicity is more commonly understood. I think you would need to have a pretty broad idea of what "Heritage" means to say Christians all belong to the same ethnic group. I would think it would be more about common ancestry, ...

 But we do have a common ancestry. 
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« Reply #37 on: December 01, 2009, 02:31:51 AM »

But we do have a common ancestry. 
Didn't stop Cain from killing his brother.


As for the OP... I've been thinking about converting for... months now. The biggest draw for me is a return to a more traditionally, liturgically oriented praxis. However, my biggest personal obstacle is fear of alienating others. Notably friends I've made in my current church (which is reflexively anti-Catholic... One night the pianist sheepishly apologized for a hymn that was composed by a Catholic) and my parents. My father doesn't seem to have any concern, even though he renewed his devotion to his Catholicism, but my mother thinks I'm slipping into an empty ritualism and away from "true" Christianity... whatever that is....
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« Reply #38 on: December 01, 2009, 02:48:36 AM »

FINALLY! Someone gets it!  So can we now stop the nonsense about "ethnic Churches" in the US?

I seem to recall that in the prayers to the Theotokos in my prayerbook, she is the protection of the Christian race.  This often gets translated as Christian people, but if I remember correctly the early Christians considered themselves a separate and unique race among humanity.
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« Reply #39 on: December 01, 2009, 12:48:56 PM »

Would you like to know from a Catholic's perspective, why some of us don't convert? The answer will be very general and won't be a detailed description of Catholic Apologetics.
I would like to, please!
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« Reply #40 on: December 01, 2009, 12:52:02 PM »

FINALLY! Someone gets it!  So can we now stop the nonsense about "ethnic Churches" in the US?

I seem to recall that in the prayers to the Theotokos in my prayerbook, she is the protection of the Christian race.  This often gets translated as Christian people, but if I remember correctly the early Christians considered themselves a separate and unique race among humanity.

The concept of race that the ancients had is vastly different from the one we engender today.  In Roman times, a citizen of the Empire was a member of the "Roman race," even if he didn't speak Latin or Greek.  

See my comments on this thread http://www.orthodoxchristianity.net/forum/index.php/topic,23194.0.html from this past September.
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« Reply #41 on: December 01, 2009, 01:03:04 PM »

Would you like to know from a Catholic's perspective, why some of us don't convert? The answer will be very general and won't be a detailed description of Catholic Apologetics.
I would like to, please!
The reason that I don't convert to Eastern Orthodoxy is that I don't find the arguements in favor of Eastern Orthodoxy to be as convincing as the arguements in favor of Catholicism.

Futher, I think that the internal logic of Catholicism is more consistent and reasonable than the internal logic of Eastern Orthodoxy.

On an existential level, (the weakest of all arguements) I don't really experience the presence of Jesus Christ as powerfully in an EO Church as I do in a Catholic Church. Others may, but I don't. I have this sense that to leave the Catholic Church would be, for me, to leave Jesus Christ.

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« Reply #42 on: December 01, 2009, 02:44:18 PM »

... and I'm a Jew.


 Hey Marc, I'm not trying to be contentious or difficult, but I've never understood how a person can be a Jew and a Christian at the same time.  Could you help me understand this?  And if we need to Mods, can we create a new thread?  Thanks!

It's an ethnic designation..


Wikipedia seems to agree with you.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ethnic_group
"An ethnic group is a group of humans whose members identify with each other, through a common heritage that is real or assumed.
Ethnic identity is further marked by the researcher Seng Yang in the recognition from others of a group's distinctiveness and the recognition of common cultural, linguistic, religious, behavioural traits as indicators of contrast to other groups."

So, then, if that's the case, Christian's are an ethnic group.  

I have heard prayers that mention "The Christian Race". But it's not really common useage. I think having Jewish ethnicity is more commonly understood. I think you would need to have a pretty broad idea of what "Heritage" means to say Christians all belong to the same ethnic group. I would think it would be more about common ancestry, ...

 But we do have a common ancestry.  

Perhaps long ago your ancestors raped my ancestors  Smiley

Past that possability, I think what normally passes for ancestory is be'ing Italian or Irish or Greek or a Jew. Anything else is innovative by todays common usage.
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« Reply #43 on: December 01, 2009, 03:21:11 PM »

But we do have a common ancestry. 
Didn't stop Cain from killing his brother.


As for the OP... I've been thinking about converting for... months now. The biggest draw for me is a return to a more traditionally, liturgically oriented praxis. However, my biggest personal obstacle is fear of alienating others. Notably friends I've made in my current church (which is reflexively anti-Catholic... One night the pianist sheepishly apologized for a hymn that was composed by a Catholic) and my parents. My father doesn't seem to have any concern, even though he renewed his devotion to his Catholicism, but my mother thinks I'm slipping into an empty ritualism and away from "true" Christianity... whatever that is....
My Mom's a staunch baptist. She used to hold the same opinions about Catholocism and Orthodoxy. Until she came to my Baptism! Then she wore a head covering out of respect, I gave her an icon of the Last Supper for Pascha and she hangs it on her wall with pride. yah, she's coming around. Becoming firm in your faith can lead others you never would have thought, to begin to question their own.
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« Reply #44 on: December 01, 2009, 05:17:19 PM »

Futher, I think that the internal logic of Catholicism is more consistent and reasonable than the internal logic of Eastern Orthodoxy.


Well... you got us there Smiley
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